African Sexual Minorities & Gender Variant Resources
Homosexuality - Gay - Lesbian - Bisexual - Transgender - Transsexual - Same-Sex Sex
To: Map of Africa
MOZAMBIQUE - Mozambicans seek constitutional amendment to enshrine gay rights (2011, Alternate Link, Alternate Link): Mozambicans are hoping to remove the ambiguous "vices against nature" from the country's law books... An LGBT association in Mozambique has welcomed clarification of the law by the country’s justice minister at the UN, but has expressed concern that the constitution and penal code are still ambiguous on gay rights. The Republic of Mozambique has strong equality credentials compared with some African neighbours, but campaigners are pursuing absolute clarification of its stance on homosexuality. LAMBDA, an organisation which is not currently recognised by the state, welcomed a statement by Benvinda Levi at the UN in which she said that homosexuality was not illegal in Mozambique. But they expressed concern over Article 71 of the Penal Code, which orders “security measures” against those who habitually commit “vices against nature”. - Prostituição masculina - A turminha gay (Translation).
Mozambique Gay Rights Group Wants Explicit Constitutional Protections (2011). - Praise for Recognition That Gay Sex Not Illegal
(2011): The Mozambican Association for the Defence of Sexual Minorities
(LAMBDA), the only organisation in the country working for gay, lesbian
and transsexual citizens, on Tuesday praised Justice Minister Benvinda
Levi for her categorical statement that homosexuality is not illegal in
Mozambique. - Mozambique LGBT group still unregistered (2011, Alternate Link, Alternate Link):
Mozambique’s only LGBT group, Lambda, said March 1 that it has been
waiting three years for the government to complete its official
registration. - HRBA and the Rights Of LGBT Persons in Mozambique
(2011): This brief aims at providing Sida country teams with brief
information on the situation of LGBT persons in Mozambique as well as
concrete advice on how LGBT issues can be included in dialogue and
Mozambique: The Nation, Gays and UN Human Rights Bodies (2011, Alternate Link):
So at Mozambican independence in 1975, the country did not inherit any
specific ban on same sex relations - just the normal prohibitions on
indecent exposure, and hopelessly vague mentions of "acts against
nature". And who will dare argue in a courtroom in this century that
gay people behave "unnaturally"? Since independence not a single person
has been prosecuted for homosexual acts. The jurists whom AIM spoke to
believe that, since there is no explicit reference to same sex
relations in the Mozambican legislation, gay sex in private between
consenting adults is perfectly legal..Yet one of the questions facing
Justice Minister Benvinda Levy at the UN meeting in Geneva is the
alleged ban on homosexuality. The matter was raised in advance
questions by Holland and by Norway. The Mozambican documents presented
for the meeting note that the Constitution of 2004 states that all
citizens are equal before the law, have the same rights and are subject
to the same duties. But, unlike the Labour Law, it does not
specifically outlaw discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation.
Should gay and lesbian organisations enjoy official recognition by the
Ministry of Justice, like other NGOs? This question was also raised at
the meeting - for the application for recognition by LAMBDA, the sole
organisation in the country representing gays and other sexual
minorities, has so far gone unanswered...
Mozambique: Rapper Takes a Stand on Homosexuality
(2010): In a post titled Gayism is sinful[pt], Mozambican rapper
Azagaia takes a stand on homosexuality: he defends “equal rights and
opportunities for all Men. (…) No matter which sexual orientation”.
Though the subject is rarely discussed in the southern Africa region,
there is a debate tonight about “Sexual Orientation and Sports” [pt] in
Maputo... "O gayismo é pecado" (2010, Translation):
So I advocate equal rights and opportunities for all men. Não
importa a raça, origem ou orientação sexual. No
matter the race, national origin or sexual orientation. Que a paz eo
amor sejam em abundância para todos! May peace and love be in
abundance for all!
Week 11: Mozambique and some very organized gay activists
(2010): First thing on Wednesday morning, I called Danilo De Silva who
runs Lambda (and was one of the founders) here in Maputo. We set a time
to meet him at 4 that afternoon at their office... The offices of
Lambda are in a house in residential area of Maputo. Except for seeing
a number of "gay boys" hanging around in the yard area, you would not
notice that it was any different than a regular house. Then you walk in
the door and see the orderly desks, computer monitors and all the
people working away. It felt almost "corporate" in efficiency. We were
greeted at the door and asked to wait for Danilo who was still in a
meeting. Everyone continued with their work... Our conversation with
Danilo seemed to reinforce what Lonely Planet was saying. Lambda was
founded in 2006 as an advocacy group for LGBT people in Mozambique.
They have never been raided (like LGBT organizations in many other
African countries), but then again, they have never been allowed to
register as a legal entity in Mozambique. Danilo told us that they felt
it best to not force things and they were making progress, both with
their education for HIV/AIDS, counseling for LGBT people and making
their presence known in government policy making... Mozambique is a
former Portuguese colony and the language and somewhat the culture,
reflect this. As the former "government administration" the Portuguese
government does little to pressure the Mozambique government about
"Gay" rights. Danilo told us one of the biggest changes regarding being
gay, was from the soap operas from Brazil that are shown on Mozambique
television... I asked Danilo what was possible and what he would like
to see happen over the next few years in Mozambique. "In one year, I
would like to see Lambda be registered. It has been pending for 3
years. In 2 years, we can be an established, powerful and key front
face in the community. We have been successful in using our model to
start groups in the other provinces. In five years I would like to be
discussing civil unions and have our 1st Gay Pride."
African lesbians demand greater rights (2008, Alternate Link, Alternate Link):
An African lesbian group on Tuesday called on governments in the
largely conservative continent to stop treating homosexuals like
criminals. The Coalition of African Lesbians is holding a conference
attended by about 100 people in Mozambique to highlight discrimination
against lesbians. "Our main goal is that lesbian and homosexuality can
no longer be seen as a criminal offence," the group's director and
conference spokeswoman, Fikile Vilakazi, told Reuters. "You should not
be arrested and charged for how you use your own body." African gay
activists accuse authorities in many countries of "state-sponsored"
homophobia and tacitly condoning their persecution. In some cases,
possible sentences against gays include eath by stoning. - African lesbian conference demands equal rights (2008). - Mozambique discovers its gay minority (2007):
The city of Maputo, Mozambique's capital, is the place where the
largest number of this minority is concentrated. This, according to the
homosexual group's leaders, is because here, people are generally most
open towards the issue. This month, as a first step, the group is to
publish an "informative and educational" journal to enlighten
First National Seminar On Gay Rights (2006, Alternate Link):
The chairperson of the Mozambican Human Rights League (LDH), Alice
Mabota, on Thursday urged the country's gay and lesbian citizen to
organise and fight for their rights. She was speaking at the first ever
seminar on gay rights in the country, organised by the LDH, with the
sponsorship of the Dutch NGO Hivos. - Movement for Gay Rights to Be Announced Soon in Mozambique (2006, Alternate Link):
At the end, on Friday night, of the first ever Mozambican seminar on
gay rights, organised by the Human Rights League (LDH), gay activist
Danilo de Sousa told AIM that the movement will probably be launched
within the next couple of weeks. But as yet it has no name.
Mozambique: Gay Rights Raised in Mozambican Paper
(2006): For the first time, a mainstream Mozambican paper has published
an article by a prominent Mozambican journalist arguing in favour of
gay rights. - Pour la première fois, un quotidien appelle au respect des homosexuels (2006, Translation):
Un journaliste mozambicain a publié dans le quotidien Beira un article
dans lequel il appelle au respect des homosexuels, signant ainsi le
premier papier du genre dans un grand journal, annonce l'Agence
d'information du Mozambique, reprise par le site Behind the Mask.
"L'homosexualité, contrairement à ce que beaucoup de gens pensent,
n'est pas une maladie, a commenté Emilio Manhique à l'occasion de sa
Pequeno orgulho em Moçambique (2003, Translation):
Depois de algumas tentativas de buscar informações sobre
a existência de um movimento gay em Moçambique, muitos
e-mails, poucas respostas e muito silêncio, resolvemos pegar a
estrada para Maputo e tentar entender como a homossexualidade é
vista naquele pais... Outro dado importante é o tabu em
relação ao tema homossexualidade. Não é
socialmente aceito que se fale neste assunto, mas é sabido que
relações sexuais entre pessoas do mesmo sexo acontecem
com naturalidade. O maior problema parece ser a abordagem do assunto.
Sabemos que temos que respeitar as regras sociais de cada lugar. Mas
não seria o momento de se colocar em duvida a
proteção destas regras ? Principalmente em um pais pobre
do continente africano, onde a epidemia da AIDS esta matando milhares
de pessoas por dia ? Onde a unica forma de se lutar contra este
problema é a prevenção e educação de
maneira clara e simples? Desta maneira a homossexualide não
é aceita, mas é praticada. Mascarada e escondida no que
alguns moçambicanos dizem « aqui, todos somos meio
bissexuais ». Seria realmente bissexualidade ? Sera que esta
bissexualidade não tem origem na prostituição ?
Num pais pobre com tantos problemas socias a prostituição
é uma alternativa de sobrevivência, não importando
o sexo, ou a orientação sexual de quem a pratique.
Quase metade população urbana diz "poder ser homossexual" -Estudo (2006, Translation):
[The research, presented at the First National Seminar on Homosexuality
in Mozambique, organized by LDH, also reports that 96 percent of
respondents know at least one homosexual, 80 percent have a homosexual
friend and 72 percent considered this trend a personal choice ]. - Manas: getting them talking (2003):
There has been a buzz word in Maputo for the last few weeks - "Manas".
It means sisters, but implies an especially close, special bond. It is
the name of an exhibition of photographs by Ditte Haarlov-Johnson,
which is on at a gallery on Av. Julius Nyerere, an exhibition of
photographs of some of Maputo's gay men - they are the Manas. The
gallery is prominently placed in the centre of town with an open glass
front and the entrance is free, throughout the day and into the evening
a constant stream of people file through seeing the photographs and
reading about this formerly hidden facet of society.
da Silva et al. (2010). Study about vulnerability and risk to HIV infection among Men who have Sex with Men in Maputo City.
Maputo, Mozambique: Lambda – Mozambican Association for Sexual Minority
Rights, Population Services Mozambique (PSI), Pathfinder International,
UNFPA. PDF Download. Download Page.
- The data revealed that the population of MSM living in Maputo City
have access to general information about HIV prevention that is
disseminated through different channels including: radio, television,
newspaper and health centers. However, it was noted that there was
hardly any information designed specifically for MSM. MSM consider the
public health services difficult to access. For one, there is lack of
technically qualified staff to address specific needs of MSM. Secondly,
MSM reported to be discriminated or treated with hostility by health
service providers. This situation has caused many MSM to avoid public
health services, even in situations where they feel it would be
necessary to seek testing, treatment, counselling or HIV/ STI
prevention of services... The study concluded that, in general, MSM in
Maputo City live in a context of vulnerability which exposes them to
HIV infection. The inefficiency of the current prevention and care
programs to address specific needs of MSM and the social discrimination they face may place them at increased risk for HIV.
da Silva et al. (2010). Estudo sobre vulnerabilidade e risco de infecção pelo HIV entre os Homens que fazem sexo com Homens na Cidade de Maputo. Maputo, Moçambique: Lambda – Associação de Defesa das Minorias Sexuais (em formação), Population Services Mozambique (PSI), Pathfinder International,UNFPA. PDF Download. Download Page.
Herança colonial pesada para gays (2010, Translation):
[In the same week that there were three marriages between same sex in
Portugal, four more were killed in Brazil gay, gays are still not
included in health plans to combat HIV in Mozambique and Angola in
recent constitutional amendment deletes the right of non-discrimination
according to sexual orientation... "We still have laws that date back
to 1886 and punish homosexuals with fines," says Danilo da Silva, 30,
who since 2006 gave the guy the Lambda, the only LGBT association in
Mozambique, which tries to register with the Ministry of Justice
without success. Segundo o activista, "os LGBT vivem no armário,
adoptando uma vida dupla". According to the activist, "LGBT people
living in the closet, taking a double life." "Há questões
culturais e religiosas que impedem avanços legislativos. Um
grande sector da população vê a homossexualidade
como uma doença, importada das cidades europeias. Os jornais e
televisões pouco tocam no assunto", acrescenta, salientando o
avanço que foi a recente Lei do Trabalho. "There are cultural
and religious issues that hinder legislative progress. A large sector
of the population sees homosexuality as a disease imported from
European cities. The newspapers and television just touch the issue,"
she adds, noting the progress that has been the recent Labour Law .
Homosexuality now debated all over Africa
(Responses to the South African decision to legalise same-sex
marriages): In Mozambique, homosexuality got a very positive debut in
the national press, as the state-owned news agency AIM last month
interviewed the country's principal human rights group on its new
campaign to stop discrimination against gays and lesbians. The dominant
independent weekly 'Savana' went further by interviewing several gay
men from a newly started organisation, talking about their experiences
of discrimination and presenting their lifestyle in a non-scandalising
manner. The principal national media of Mozambique
seemed promoting an improved rights situation for the country's sexual
minorities, and government representatives promised to look at the
situation. Influence from neighbouring South Africa surely had made a rapid impact on the social dialogue in Mozambique, where the issue of homosexuality has been a no-go debate until last month. - Mozambique: Religious leaders on AIDS and gays (2004): The
Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique in Maputo reported recently on the
homophobic ranting of an Islamic cleric that formed part of a debate on
Aids. Clearly disapproving of the cleric's views, the report also takes
a side swipe at some Christian leaders too. - Arcebispo
de Maputo critica legalização do casamento homossexual, e
denuncia degradação dos valores morais na sociedade
moçambicana [Maputo Archbishop criticizes legalization of
homosexual marriage, and denounces erosion of moral values in
Mozambican society](2005, Translation).
The practice of bukhontxana, or mine marriages, seems to have emerged
amongst Mozambican workers in the early twentieth century... In Southern
Mozambique, young adolescents often played together 'like
husband and wife', a form of gender socialisation that sometimes
included the practice of external coitus, or penetration
between the thighs (inter-crural sex). Boys and girls lived
in special huts at the entrance to the homestead, and it
was easy for them to meet at night; the only proviso to
gangisa was that it should conform to local rules of exogamy
and that the young couple should not stay together until
morning: full and uninhibited sexual relations were tied
to marriage. Thus sexuality bound boys and girls into gender roles that
were distintly masculine and feminine and marked the passage
from childhood to adulthood. Gangisa formed part of the
primary sexual imagery of young men arriving on the mines.
As they came from a society that placed great value on children,
and discouraged sexual practices that did not lead to pregnancy,
the only acceptable form of sexual release to which they
could turn, within their cultural code, were variations
of the intercrural sex practised during gangisa. - Homossexualidade em Moçambique [Homosexuality in Mozambique - History] (2010, Translation).
Forman, Ross G (2002). Randy
on the Rand: Portuguese African Labor and the Discourse on "Unnatural
Vice" in the Transvaal in the Early Twentieth Century. Journal of the History of Sexuality, 11(4): 570-609. PDF Download. Reference.
Because the economic center of South Africa had shifted from the Cape
Province to the Transvaal as a result of the development of the mines,
the country was heavily indebted to these workers from Mozambique, who
in 1907 comprised about 70 percent of the labor force officially hired
by the Witwatersrand Native Labour Association (WNLA)and numbered more
than seventy thousand... Their inquiry was prompted by and followed on
the heels of an explosive 1906 investigation of "immorality" among the
indentured Chinese laborers brought to the Transvaal after the
conclusion of the Anglo- Boer War, for the earlier investigators had
heard repeated testimony that the "Mozambique Natives" could teach the Chinese inore vice than the Chinese
could teach them... For instance, although a number of "boys" -
interviewed were named by other witnesses as being party to mine
marriages, nearly all claimed linowledge of the practice but
categorically denied their ou7n involvement in it...
‘African Homosexuality’ Imagined: Doing Sexuality in Contested Spaces:
During her time in the northern region of Mozambique, one Danish
anthropologist observed that unlike her own experiences learning about
women’s sexuality in a European, Christian context, sexualities were
openly discussed and expressed in Mozambique society. A woman’s
sexuality was something of her own, part of her personality and
identity as a woman, not defined in relation to, or ‘opened up’ by men.
Although these women were bound by the heterosexual norms and cultural
expectations of having a husband and children and playing the roles of
wife and mother, she discovered that there was a space for women to
have same-sex relationships where the lines between friendship and
lover were blurred... The women in northern Mozambique and Lesotho are
examples of same-sex relationships and sexualities located outside of
the “heterosexual norms in Africa.” These relationships were socially
and culturally accepted in Mozambique, and were celebrated by women and
their husbands in the Lesotho context, maybe because they existed
alongside women’s heterosexual relationships and were not disruptive to
the gender power system. However, we must hesitate to label these
relationships as homosexual relationships, especially in the Lesotho
context where the women themselves did not identify themselves as
lesbians or homosexual because “homosexuality is not a conceptual
category everywhere… and the kinds of sexual acts it is thought
possible to perform, and the social identities that come to be attached
to those who perform them, vary from one society to another”...
Resources: - Behind the Mask - A Web Site on Gay and Lesbian Affairs in Africa. - Africa by Country: Mozambique. Mozambique Archive. - African Veil: Countries Covered: Mozambique. - Queer afrol. - Afrol News; Gay/Lesbian Archives. - theGully.com news & Articles: Africa. - Lambda Moçambique (Translation): Documents/Studies (Translation) - Press Release (2011, Translation).Global Gayz: Africa: Mozambique News Reports From 2006 to the Present. - ILGA: Africa: Mozambique. - LGBT rights in Mozambique. - Sodomy Laws. - Human Rights Watch: Use Search Function. - Amnesty International: Use Search Function. - Pink News: Europe's Largest Gay News Service: Africa. - AsylumLaw.Org: Sexual Minorities & HIV Status: Documents / Reports / Website Links / Organizations. Mozambique Documents. - Links to News Sources for GLBT World.
Global Gayz) - News/Report. - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden. - Behind the Mask - A Web Site on Gay and Lesbian Affairs in Africa. - Africa by Country News: Mozambique News. - African Veil: Countries Covered: Mozambique.
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